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House Bill 626 — Admin procedure, scope of review

House Bill 626 — Admin procedure, scope of review

Parrish Miller
February 25, 2024

Bill Description: House Bill 626 would tell courts not to defer to agencies’ interpretations of laws or rules but to instead favor an interpretation that limits agency power.

Rating: +1

NOTE: House Bill 626 is similar to House Bill 562, introduced earlier this session.

Does it violate the spirit or the letter of either the U.S. Constitution or the Idaho Constitution? Examples include restrictions on speech, public assembly, the press, privacy, private property, or firearms. Conversely, does it restore or uphold the protections guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution or the Idaho Constitution?

House Bill 626 would amend Section 67-5279, Idaho Code, by adding a new subsection that says, "When interpreting the provisions of any state law, this chapter, or any rule, as defined in section 67-5201, Idaho Code, the court shall not defer to an agency's interpretation of the law or rule and shall interpret its meaning and effect de novo. In an action brought by or against an agency, after applying all customary tools of interpretation, the court shall exercise any remaining doubt in favor of a reasonable interpretation that limits agency power and maximizes individual liberty."

This provision is more expansive than the one found in House Bill 562, which did not apply this new standard to the interpretation of "any state law," the provisions of the chapter, or administrative rules.

Limiting agency (government) power and maximizing individual liberty is always the appropriate context for judicial review.


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